Boats Against the Current

Archive/RSS/Ask/Submit

The title of this blog comes from the closing sentence of The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald: "So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past."

About Me -- Facebook -- Steam -- Instagram -- Flickr -- Goodreads -- Academia.edu -- Last.fm -- 8-Tracks -- Svpply

If each one of us were no more than a single human being, if the world really could completely be rid of us with a single bullet, then there would be no sense in telling stories anymore. But every person is more than himself: he is also the unique, entirely particular, and in every case meaningful and remarkable point of intersection where the phenomena of the world overlap, only once and never again in just this way. That is why everyone’s story is important, eternal, and godlike—why everyone, as long as and in whatever fashion he lives and fulfills the will of Nature, is wonderful and worthy of all our attention. Everyone is the spirit made flesh; in everyone, creation takes form and suffers; in everyone, a Redeemer dies on the cross.

Hermann Hesse (Demian) — Preach bro. 

Summer Adventures

I developed the roll of film that I shot using my “new” Konica Auto S2 the other day. Lessons learned: I need to remember to focus and the light meter doesn’t lie.  

#35mm  #GPOY  

Ending Edna: An Adventure in Adulthood

Last week, I woke up, turned over, and noticed a black thing on the ceiling above my head. Bleary eyed, I focused on the black streak. It was difficult in the early morning hours to focus on something relatively small and, when my eyes adjusted, I really wished that they hadn’t.

Dangling precariously above my head was a large house centipede (aka Scutigera coleoptrata). Known for their speed, cunning, and nocturnal hunting, the house centipede tends to inhabit moist buildings where it feeds on smaller arthropods like spiders, ‘roaches, and pillbugs.

Now, that’s all well and good, and I can live with the knowledge that these many-legged creatures live INSIDE my walls where they feed on even less desirable insects. …But I have a real problem when they decide to hunt around my bed while I’m sleeping. 

Call me irrational. Call me a pussy.

After breathing heavily for a few moments and waiting for my limbs to catch up with my brain and eyes, I watched as “Edna”* crawled casually strolled across the ceiling toward the nearest wall. Every few inches, she’d pause and—as if to taunt me—threaten to fall onto my bed. In these horrifying seconds, a few of her legs would detach from the stuccoed ceiling and she’d flail wildly in a desperate attempt to regain her footing.

After this process had occurred for a second time and I had gained control of my greater faculties, I leapt out of bed and seized the nearest tome. Wielding an antique copy of Eros magazine above my head, like a troglodyte with a club, I paused. How does one go about killing something above one’s head? It’s almost impossible to angle a book properly… 

So I waited there, naked and holding a copy of Eros, frozen in fear before a stumbling arthropod. The very image of masculinity.

As I turned to find a more suitable weapon, Edna succumbed to her precarious jaunt and fell onto the floor. As I turned around and realized what had happened, I noticed Edna—now free from the constraints on her movement—hauling ass across the bedroom floor. On “equal” ground, I chose to launch my attack. Screaming, like a small child, I hurled my copy of Eros at the ground and connected. Edna had met her bitter end.   

The moral of this story? Well, there isn’t really a moral. …But adulthood means that you have to kill your own bugs. 

*Don’t give me shit about gendering a centipede. I don’t care what you think.

The Fall Reading List

Life Updates and a Recipe: Failure, Success, and a lot of Blood

I didn’t get the job. #depression

While the rejection doesn’t really surprise me anymore (I’ve become desensitized), I was/am pretty upset that it didn’t work out. I really wanted that job and I think it would have been a great position for me. …I suppose there’s no sense crying over spilled milk (insert other cliches here), but it’s hard not to. It makes a mess.

On a lighter note, nostalgia got the better of me last week and I decided to make Scotch eggs. Admittedly, my mother’s recipe is better (if more fattening) than the one that I found online and the whole operation isn’t quite as seamless without a silpat (my next culinary investment), but I was proud of the results of my gastronomic adventure. If you have a surplus of eggs rolling around in your refrigerator, I highly recommend the recipe below. It’s fast, fun, and reasonably good for you. If you increase the recipe, leftovers keep well in tupperware for several days and make for tasty (and portable) work lunches. 

P.S. I was cutting bread yesterday when my serrated knife slipped and went into the side of my right index finger. I pride myself in my ability to avoid injury, but there was SO MUCH BLOOD. Everything is better now that it has closed, but it’s going to leave a lovely battle scar. Once more unto the beach! 

Scotch Eggs (evidently, the Dutch call them ‘vogelnestje’ (‘little bird’s nest’) which is wayyy cuter)

Ingredients

  • 6-8 eggs (I used 6 hard boiled for the actual eggs and two unadulterated for the egg bath)
  • pound ground chicken (I used ground turkey) 
  • teaspoons each: sugar, soy sauce, rice vinegar and a few good grinds of black pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger (I turned some fresh ginger into a paste and that worked relatively well)
  • stalks green onions, minced
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • cup bread crumbs (panko works well, but fresh would be best)
  • teaspoons kosher salt
  • oil for frying (I used vegetable oil)

Procedures

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Carefully place four eggs in and boil for five minutes (this is for a runny yolk, if you want it firmer, add a bit of time). While they’re boiling, prepare a large ice bath. When five minutes is up, immediately place the eggs in the bath.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the chicken, sugar, soy sauce, rice vinegar, black pepper, 1 teaspoon of ground ginger, and the green onions.
  3. In three smaller bowls, set up your breading station. In the first bowl, combine flour, 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger, 1 teaspoon of salt, and black pepper to taste. In the second, whip up the remaining 2 eggs with a splash of water. In the third bowl, combine the panko, remaining 1 teaspoon of salt, remaining 1/4 teaspoon of ginger, and black pepper.
  4. Working with wet hands, divide chicken into four equal parts. Place them on separate squares of parchment paper and flatten out into circles, about 1/2 inch thick. Peel the eggs, coat them in a little flour, and then wrap each in chicken. It helps if you fold up the parchment paper to help the chicken onto the egg.
  5. Once the egg is fully encased in the meat, coat it in flour, and then egg, and then panko. Place back on the parchment and hold in the fridge until the rest of the eggs are ready to go.
  6. Fill a large pot with about 3-4 inches of oil and heat it to 350 f. Fry the Scotch eggs for 5-6 minutes, until they’re golden brown and cooked through. Enjoy!
 
1 2 3 4 5